Biography Review (Tuscon Citizen)

I’m Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen by Sylvie Simmons (ECCO, $27.99)
 Leonard Cohen is most of the most influential music figures of the 20th century. Even before he turned his attention to music, he had built his reputation as both an accomplished novelist and poet. His dual careers in music and literature were an almost seamless blend, establishing Cohen as truly an unmatched artist.

Born into a wealthy Canadian family, Cohen was already in his 30s when he became a professional musician. From London, the Greek island of Hydra, to New York, Cohen began his arc of prodigious achievements. During the mid-nineties, just as everything seemed to be coming together, Cohen abruptly entered a monastery. When he returned from his retreat, he found his bank accounts bled dry. At the age of seventy-three, he was forced back into the concert world and so began his wildly successful three-year world tour.

Cohen is a complex man and Sylvie Simmons has captured every essence of it in her remarkable book. This is a deeply insightful portrait that is guaranteed to haunt the reader much like his “Suzanne” and “Bird on the Wire.”

by Larry Cox for the Tuscon Citizen

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